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Butcher & Barlow LLP

Work 01942 883 669
Fax 01942 897 480

North West: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Elsewhere in the North West
Corporate and commercial: Elsewhere in the North West - ranked: tier 3

Butcher & Barlow LLP

Butcher & Barlow LLP 'provides the complete spectrum of legal services'. It advises on various corporate and commercial matters including share options, shareholder agreements, commercial agreements and partnership agreements. The team is headed by Gadbrook Park-based Jonathan Aldersley who specialises in enterprise management incentive (EMI) schemes. Andrew MacKenzie, Adam Shawcross and Rebecca Jepson were promoted to partner in May 2018.

Practice head(s):Jonathan Aldersley

Other key lawyers:James Hodgson; Andrew Mackenzie; Adam Shawcross; Rebecca Jepson; Rachel Martin


'A local/regional firm with the capability of much larger city firms'.

Jonathan Aldersley is very efficient in his delivery’.

A very diverse law firm which provides the complete spectrum of legal services’.


Key Clients

Joseph Holt

Higham & Higham

Conveyor Networks Ltd

Booth Charities

Fifield Glynn

SPS Viking limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for SPS Viking in acquisition of assets and goodwill from administrator.
  • Acted for Thomas Leo Murphy and Van Raam Holdings as seller in a sale of shares deal totalling £16.5m.
  • Advised Fifield Glyn on the acquisition of the business and assets of a London based surveyors.
  • Advising pension trustees on a new structure to fund pension deficit.

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North West: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation: Elsewhere in the North West
Commercial litigation: Elsewhere in the North West - ranked: tier 3

Butcher & Barlow LLP

Butcher & Barlow LLP advises its roster of clients on commercial, contractual and property disputes, while other areas of expertise include estate inheritance, insolvency, construction, negligence and agricultural claims. Gadbrook Park-based Alexander Sandland and Bury-based Anthony Higham head the team. Andrew Mackenzie was promoted to the partnership in May 2018.

Practice head(s):Alexander Sandland; Anthony Higham

Other key lawyers:Andrew Mackenzie; Catherine Gregson; James Holton; Victoria Philipson


Very client focused and responsive’.

Alex Sandland is a commercially realistic litigator’.

Catherine Gregson is a through and efficient case manager’.

Clear and concise in their advice provided to clients, they provide advice that is balanced and assist clients in making decisions regarding litigation’.

Approachable and open to listening to alternative points made by parties’.

Catherine Gregson is approachable and provides succinct advice to clients’.

Key Clients

Joseph Holt Ltd

Junction Properties

Conveyor Services Limited

Fords Of Winsford

Apex Construction and Design

GB Properties

Leslie and Michelle Manning

Thomas Properties

Work highlights

  • Represented GB Properties in appeal proceedings following initial litigation in relation to the Application of ‘fixed costs’ pursuant to CPR.71 and CPR.45.
  • Represented client in a dispute with receivers in relation to a £4m-plus dispute.

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North West: Insurance

Clinical negligence: claimant
Clinical negligence: claimant - ranked: tier 3

Butcher & Barlow LLP

Butcher & Barlow LLP is 'able to combine local knowledge with the resources of a large firm through its series of offices' across the north west. Anthony Higham leads the team, which handles a diverse and complex clinical negligence caseload including birth injuries, cosmetic surgery claims, pregnancy and gynaecology injuries as well as surgical compensation claims. Adam Shawcross, who goes 'above and beyond', Samuel Dale and Andrew Mackenzie were all promoted to partner in May 2018.

Practice head(s):Anthony Higham

Other key lawyers:Gregory Porter; Adam Shawcross; Samuel Dale


'Within the claimant market they are able to be very hands on with their clients, being able to see them face-to-face on short notice.'

'Managing partner Anthony Higham is extremely experienced, an excellent negotiator and practically minded as well as being very bright.'

'Andrew MacKenzie, Adam Shawcross and Samuel Dale all bring an excellent mixture of intellectual ability with the same down-to-earth approach to dealing with clients and their claims which generally produces well-run, successful and well-managed claims.'

'I can't praise Anthony Higham and Adam Shawcross highly enough for the way they dealt with my case on a professional level, but at the same time showing empathy and compassion for the traumatic experience myself and my family were going through.'

Work highlights

  • Advised on a claim against the Christie NHS Trust following negligence elected surgery.
  • Representing the  claimant in a claim against Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust in relation to failed carpal tunnel surgery.
  • Representing the claimant in a claim against her mother’s GP for failing to notify her that she was a carrier of Menkes disease.
  • Representing the claimant in a high value claim against East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust following alleged negligent orthopaedic surgery.
  • Representing a  claimant in a high value claim against Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust following brain injury during childbirth.

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North West: Private client

Agriculture and estates
Agriculture and estates - ranked: tier 1

Butcher & Barlow LLP

Butcher & Barlow LLP's agricultural team provides a broad range of legal services, working in tandem with property, corporate and litigation colleagues based in the same office. The practice, which has particular expertise in succession planning and the sale of agricultural land for residential development, is headed up by the hugely experienced Mike Bracegirdle, who set up the Gadbrook Park office in 2014, since when it has enjoyed a year-on-year fee revenue increase of 20%.

Practice head(s):Mike Bracegirdle


'Excellent to communicate with - if you do not understand anything, they explain; if you have concerns, they sort them out. They get on with the job, so much so you are made to feel like you are their only client, which is what everyone wants.'

'Breadth of knowledge. Attention to detail. Local. Contactable.'

'The agricultural team gets to understand you and your farming business. They work closely with other agri professionals in order to help you with a variety of your business needs.'

'Very proactive in their approach to clients and getting matters satisfactorily completed.'

'A very knowledgeable, professional & approachable practice. Above all, very efficient in their execution of tasks in comparison to other firms.'

'The firm is effective in providing clear and helpful legal advice.'

'The business has a strong reputation within the marketplace which continues to grow given their ability to deliver a cost-effective service.'

'Specific areas of strength include communication, planning and organising and delivering work ahead of schedule deadlines.'

'Very professional in dealing with questions - open, honest and always made us feel informed'

'The team has a vast knowledge of a lot of different areas - they have very experienced solicitors who always pass their full knowledge to younger members of staff in the practice,'

'Partners have experience and the ability to resolve issues and work to tight deadlines.'

'Everything Mike Bracegirdle does for us is to the highest standard; done thoroughly but in the quickest time possible - we know he is working 100% for us. He treats you as an individual, not like any other client. He keeps you up to date without you even having to ask, so you know he is always doing his best for you.'

'It has been a joy to work with Zoe Paton-Crockett on a number of matters. Zoe is knowledgeable and always thorough and thoughtful'

'Mike Bracegirdle does not wait for things to happen and is not afraid to pick up the telephone to make sure cases are progressed.'

'Jonathan Aldersley has great attention to detail and makes sure that matters are completed expeditiously.'

'Mike Bracegirdle's approachable nature and straightforward attitude have always stood out to me. The efficient manner in which he deals with queries is faultless.'

'The team is professional and well-prepared, making for an excellent working relationship and for a high standard of service for the client or clients.'

'John Hyatt and Graham Gigg both provide an extremely high level of service and professionalism.'

'Mike Bracegirdle always goes the extra mile to get things sorted - he has a vast knowledge of agricultural property and always knows the best ways to deal with matters.'

'Graham Gigg is a well liked, charismatic individual that clients like to deal with.'

Key Clients

Booth Charities

Work highlights

  • Advised on complex negotiation of a farm purchase subject to existing Agricultural Holdings Act tenancy, to be tax efficient to both parties in the transaction.
  • Advised on sale of part of a charged farm in a short timescale to ensure client could qualify for tax relief.
  • Advised on succession planning and farming business structure on an estate valued at over £2m.
  • Advised on full review of land holdings and new business structure of a farming enterprise valued at over £10m.
  • Advised on negotiation of Agricultural Property Relief in a complex farming estate relating to three farms, all in the same ownership and subject to a Farm Business Tenancy.
Leading individuals

Michael Bracegirdle - Butcher & Barlow LLP

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Contentious trusts and probate
Contentious trusts and probate - ranked: tier 3

Butcher & Barlow LLP

Butcher & Barlow LLP offers the full spectrum of services to high-net-worth clients, covering all types of disputes in this area, advising executors, beneficiaries, trustees and others challenging the validity of wills. The team is headed up by Sandbach-based Samuel Dale, who handles both contentious and non-contentious work.

Practice head(s):Samuel Dale


'Very helpful and approachable.'

'High quality service with all the benefits of a high street practice.'

'A firm which combines the local touch with a strong team across its offices.'

'Butcher and Barlow has great strength in this area with a number of excellent practitioners in trusts and probate work. They bring together the expertise of a larger firm with the personal service of a family solicitor and take trouble to ensure that all client needs are met.'

'Strong partners, typically raised up through the ranks, with an impressive knowledge of clients' backgrounds and legal needs.'

'Samuel Dale is attentive to detail and not afraid run difficult arguments to successful conclusions.'

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Personal tax, trusts and probate
Personal tax, trusts and probate - ranked: tier 2

Butcher & Barlow LLP

The team at Butcher & Barlow LLP undertakes a high volume of work for business owners and high-net-worth individuals on a range of matters including wills, powers of attorney, Court of Protection and general administration of estates. The firm also has particular expertise in agricultural work, offering a bespoke service in estate planning for farmers. Practice head Christopher Hopkins, who has an 'impressive depth of knowledge', leads the team which includes the 'competent and tenacious' Jessica Shore and 'exceptionally reliable' Jim Whitaker.

Practice head(s):Chris Hopkins

Other key lawyers:Jessica Shore; Jim Whitaker


'The firm was very efficient and prompt.'

'The team are extremely approachable with excellent communication skills.  They are able to explain very technical issues in a clear succinct way.'

'Jessica Shore's competence and tenacity to achieve a successful result was outstanding.'

'The team has been professional, friendly, informative and caring. The support team have been efficient, speedy with responses, and readily available.'

'Chris Hopkins' depth and breadth of knowledge was impressive and his manner friendly and professional.'

'Jim Whitaker is extremely efficient and exceptionally reliable.'

Work highlights

  • Advised on estate involving both free estate and a family discretionary trust, both of which had an interest in land with the potential for development, which has now been realised.
  • Advised on a high value estate with issues of inheritance tax,  jurisdiction and cross department involvement with regard to a potential dilapidations claim for commercial property.
  • Advised on administration of a large estate, with life interests in two trust funds and claims for agricultural relief and business relief.

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North West: Real estate

Commercial property: Elsewhere in the North West
Commercial property: Elsewhere in the North West - ranked: tier 2

Butcher & Barlow LLP

Butcher & Barlow LLP¬†handles land acquisitions and is experienced in commercial and residential development.¬†Jonathan Aldersley¬†is experienced in the sale and purchase of public houses and also handles commercial refinancing.¬†John Hyatt¬†and Rebecca Jepson¬†handle transactions in the agricultural sector, and¬†James Hodgson¬†advises on commercial leases and investment property work.¬†The team welcomed the 'experienced'¬†Daniel Woodcock¬†from Chafes Hague Lambert LLP¬†in 2019.¬†¬†Recently promoted partner Zo√ę Paton-Crockett, who is experienced in land promotion and advises on the acquisition and sale of land for commercial and residential development, heads the team.

Practice head(s):Zoë Paton-Crockett

Other key lawyers:Jonathan Aldersley; Daniel Woodcock; John Hyatt; Rebecca Jepson


John Hyatt is able to efficiently complete deals without it seeming like a long winded process.

James Hodgson is meticulous in his work and is commercially aware to ensure that a deal can be done.

Jonathan Aldersley is very efficient, knowledgeable and responds quickly.

The team has a wealth of knowledge and experience and is able to effectively and efficiently handle complex property negotiations.

The team is very knowledgeable, capable and pragmatic.

Key Clients

Joseph Holt

Trustees of the Booth Charities

Svenska Handelsbanken

Renew Land Developments

Muller Property Group

Fords of Winsford

Pioneer Design and Build

Black & White Developments

Stretton Property Group

Staffordshire Waste

Land Recovery

Llanfaelog Rhosneigr

Orchard Green Developments

Work highlights

  • Represented a property investor on the sale of a multi-let industrial estate to an institutional investor.
  • Represented a valuable family trust fund in the promotion of green belt land which involved collaboration with an adjoining landowner.
  • Advised Renew Land Developments on the conditional acquisition and simultaneous sale of a public house and adjoining land to a housing association for residential development.
  • Advised Black & White Developments on the sale of a multi-let industrial site with construction elements
  • Advised Muller Property Group on the acquisition of a site intended for residential redevelopment by a housing association, which was simultaneously sub-sold together with another site already owned by the client.  
Next Generation Partners

Zo√ę Paton-Crockett - Butcher & Barlow LLP

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Property litigation
Property litigation - ranked: tier 5

Butcher & Barlow LLP

Butcher & Barlow LLP's property litigation team handles commercial landlord and tenant matters, and complex land disputes involving restrictive covenants, boundary disputes and registration issues. The team particularly stands out for its agricultural sector expertise and its clients include developers, investors, institutional lenders, professional services firms, landed estates and agricultural occupiers. Department head Alex Sandland is very 'supportive and very determined; he is a tough cookie, and is great to have on your side'. Associates James Holton, who is a landlord and tenant specialist, and Catherine Gregson are also recommended.

Practice head(s):Alex Sandland

Other key lawyers:James Holton; Catherine Gregson


Alex Sandland and James Holton are commercial and easy to work with

The team is highly knowledgeable, approachable, friendly and commercially minded

The team operates pragmatically and in a way that always maintains focus on reaching an amicable resolution to the dispute wherever possible

James Holton is highly skilled in keeping the client regularly informed; he is approachable, yet assured in his administration

Key Clients

The Trustees of the Booth Charities

Joseph Holt

Renew Land Developments

Black & White Developments

Land Recovery

GB Properties

Apex Construction and Design

Brighouse Farmers

Junction Property

Work highlights

  • Defended a property investor on a 1954 Act application for a renewal lease.
  • Acted for a tenant firm in multi-party dilapidations and rent arrears litigation concerning its former offices.
  • Represented a client in a dispute with receivers in relation to a £4m dispute.
  • Represented a property investor in a dilapidations claim against a national retailer which had occupied the premises as its head office for 26 years.
  • The team is retained by a substantial country estate to advise on a multitude of disputes and prospective litigation.

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